Underrated + Overlooked Features to Consider Adding to Your Deck

Save Don’t miss out on making your deck stand out with well-executed, unique deck features. With just a few simple additions, otherwise ordinary decks can be transformed into a work of art. From garden-themed decks to private reading nooks, the right additions can help you define or redefine your deck. But what kind of features […]

Deck Bar Ideas to Get Your Backyard Ready for Summer

Your deck is a great place to unwind with friends, family, and to entertain guests. Whether you’ve created a deck that’s a relaxing retreat or built a spot that’s ideal for backyard get-togethers, you can take things to the next level by building a deck bar. Save Gone are the days of running back and […]

Best Deck Stains for 2023

Save Even the toughest decking materials can be gradually worn down by elements. Sun exposure and UV rays can cause surfaces to fade, moisture can promote rot or infestation, and even changes in temperature can expand and contract organic materials, such as wood decking planks. Using a deck stain is one of the best ways […]

The Best Outdoor Rugs to Buy

Ever hear someone say, “that rug really pulled the room together?” Indoors or outdoors, rugs can help divide a space, draw the eye to a new focal point, provide a sense of personality, and even protect surfaces from scratching. In short, they can help outdoor spaces feel more like indoor spaces, which is part of […]

How to Install a Shade Sail

Shade sails shield you from the heat of the sun, blocking UV light while providing their own distinctive upscale style. As a nice alternative or accompaniment to a pergola, a shade sail can be a fantastic way to provide shade where it’s needed most. Installing a shade sail is fairly simple, but it requires a […]

16 Freestanding & Built-In Deck Bench Seating Ideas

From a solitary morning breakfast to an evening party with friends, decks can serve countless purposes. And including either stand-alone or built-in benches on a deck can be versatile enough to serve more than one function, from providing a more welcoming area to guests to delivering raw aesthetic appeal. Between different styles of benches, material […]

11 Shade Solutions and Ideas for Decks, Porches, and Patios

There’s nothing wrong with a little fun in the sun, but excess sun exposure can be damaging to your possessions and outdoor furniture. In order to determine the right shade solutions for decks or other areas around your home, you need to take into consideration a lot of things about your unique circumstances. What if […]

How to Build a Built-in Deck Bench

The availability of good seating can transform a deck, and few options compare with built-in deck benches. Well-executed benches can provide a more welcoming space for entertaining guests, reinvent the aesthetic of your deck, or simply save space.

How to Build Deck Planter Boxes

Save Planters can come in many shapes and sizes. Most planters are decorative boxes built to display potted plants. Planters are usually built out of 2x4s and 2x6s with a shelf or false bottom set about 12”-16” below the top to support the plants. This is so plants can be exchanged as necessary while providing the […]

How to Build a Pergola on a Deck

A pergola is a structure built to provide overhead shade. It is usually supported on four sides by vertical posts that hold in place a lattice of wooden members. Some pergolas are attached to the house at one side with a ledger board. If you plan to do this, make sure you take all the same precautions to maintain a watertight connection using flashing and caulking. The sizes of the overhead members can vary, but the lowest boards in the assembly will be the heaviest. Beams attached to posts will support one or more layers of cross members. The spacing and size of these members or louvers will dictate the amount of sunlight that is allowed to penetrate and the visual mass of the structure. Sometimes vines are trained to grow through the latticework to provide a lush natural canopy. Pergolas and other overhead structures are subject to building codes. While intended only for shade, these structures often support hanging swings. Depending on the design, slats overhead intended for shade may be close enough to support bridging snow. Due to the structure of some snowflakes, snow is able to bridge over gaps as big as 4 inches or more. Snow piling up on a pergola likens it to that of a roof. Even without snow bridging possibilities, many building authorities will assign a minimum 20 psf live load for the structure to support.  It is very important to properly attach pergola posts when installing a pergola over a deck. The main concern is how the structure will react under high wind conditions. Most deck builders bolt pergola support posts to the frame of the deck using (2) 1/2″ x 6″ lag screws with washers per post. This technique is the same as attaching a rail post. Pergolas are top heavy. Without lateral bracing, they can sway in the wind and experience strong uplift forces as the pergola acts as a sail. Attaching sections of rail in between pergola posts will strengthen the pergola. Installing 45-degree bracing in between the post and header beam also will increase stability. Using 6x6s for support posts will further strengthen the structure.